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86-95 Trucks & 4Runners 2nd/3rd gen pickups, and 1st/2nd gen 4Runners with IFS

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Old 02-05-2009, 08:11 AM   #1
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White Smoke at Startup, but goes away???

I have a 91 4runner auto, I know that there are other treads on white smoke but this is different. When it sits overnight and I start it in the morning. I get allot of white smoke. When it warms up the white smoke gets less. When I drive it, no white smoke. Today when I parked, I checked the exhaust and no white smoke. I did put my hand by the tail pipe to smell the exhaust and notice it was really hot. Way more than normal. Not sure if that was a result of premium gas and fuel injector cleaner. What could be causing this smoke and why does it go away after running.
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Old 02-05-2009, 08:20 AM   #2
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A head gasket CAN read like this. A compression test AND coolant system pressure test are the only way to know for SURE. You can get tools for both at Sears for not a lot of money.
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Old 02-05-2009, 08:29 AM   #3
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Are you sure it's just not normal exhaust smoke?
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Old 02-05-2009, 08:33 AM   #4
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Possibly dry/worn out valve guide seals???

Saw that a lot on the old Chevy smallblocks.
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Old 02-05-2009, 09:23 AM   #5
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Try driving it immediately after you start up the truck. I find that if I roll the truck (even with the engine not started) it doesnt smoke. I'm just curious if yours is the same case as mine.

Mine has been doing this before and after the head gasket replacement. While I was doing the gasket I had the head machined and the valved/seals all redone (so they were all new). I'm not sure if the guides were done or not. So that might be my problem.

Anyway, I have yet to do a compression test. Attempted to, but I had a broken gauge. So now I have to get another one.
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Old 02-05-2009, 09:26 AM   #6
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Quote:
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A head gasket CAN read like this. A compression test AND coolant system pressure test are the only way to know for SURE. You can get tools for both at Sears for not a lot of money.
How do you do a compression test? Forgive me, I'm not motor service savey.
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Old 02-05-2009, 09:37 AM   #7
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get a compression tester and screw it into the spark plug port. (dont forget to disconnect your ignition wire)
have someone turn the engine over until the psi peaks out and stops climbing
whatever it peaks out at is your final result

sounds like your head gasket is starting to let go. when your motor cools, everything contracts and the leak opens up. then when it heats up, expansion closes it off.
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Old 02-05-2009, 10:18 AM   #8
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get a compression tester and screw it into the spark plug port. (dont forget to disconnect your ignition wire)
have someone turn the engine over until the psi peaks out and stops climbing
whatever it peaks out at is your final result

sounds like your head gasket is starting to let go. when your motor cools, everything contracts and the leak opens up. then when it heats up, expansion closes it off.
what psi is normal and what psi should you be conserned?
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Old 02-05-2009, 10:19 AM   #9
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I have a question. With a blown headgasket can a car still run?

If it does run, does it get bad mpg or something?

Mine usually has a lot of white smoke at start up to. I'm going to do a compression test, I've already done the coolant check and that is good.
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Old 02-05-2009, 10:34 AM   #10
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yes it will still run not very good it depends on how bad its leaking if its bad then it probally will bearly run if its not to bad then yes just very rough and the white smoke could be condensation that usually comes out when you first start your truck my truck white smokes too but only when its in the 20s low 30s yea that normal im pretty sure
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Old 02-05-2009, 10:38 AM   #11
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now the minimum pressure that you should have is 142PSI the max you should have is 171PSI and the difference between each cyl. should be 14 or less if it doesnt fall into that catergeory then you have problem oh yea almost forgot make sure the truck is at normal operating temp
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Old 02-05-2009, 11:36 AM   #12
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Lets say its a head gasket. What am I looking at $$$ ?
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Old 02-05-2009, 11:50 AM   #13
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I've heard a hgasket job is about $1000-$1800. Definitely worth doing yourself, especially for the experience.
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Old 02-05-2009, 12:49 PM   #14
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How cold does it get where you live?
Are you losing coolant?

Where I live (Alaska) when I first start it, and when its cold, it billows white smoke for a few minutes. If its really cold ( -20 and below) its usually keeps shooting white smoke even while I drive. Its just the exhaust condensing. Ever see jet trails? Same thing. The exhaust is just condensing.
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Old 02-05-2009, 01:00 PM   #15
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Yeah I think I have good head gaskets. Mine does it after a cold night (like 30 degrees, but it probably gets lower).

And my truck runs really well, the coolant pressure is good, and it runs at a normal operating temp.
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Old 02-05-2009, 01:08 PM   #16
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well, it could be that your head gasket is on the way out and the leak is sealing up somewhat when the metal of the block and/or head heats up and changes shape ever so slightly. Smoke on a cold startup would be blueish in tint, not white. Thats from normal valve and piston ring deterioration on high mileage engines. White smoke is almost always coolant, and on our engines, the most likely place to look is the head gasket. I feel its a ticking timebomb for you. I say call your toyota dealership with your VIN and see if the headgasket was replaced. I think there was a recall for that. If they wont do it for free, I have heard that they will do it at a deep discout (of course thats over dealership prices whatever they may be). Also check to see if your vehicle is affected by the steering shaft recall and if that was taken care of. This is a check every one of us toy owners should do. Watch your coolant pressure for spikes and your tailpipe for white smoke. If you see either, stop and turn off the motor immediately. You could save yourself your entire block and head if you catch it in time before it all turns to a warped and useless version of its former self.
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Old 02-05-2009, 01:17 PM   #17
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I would have to disagree with it being blueish. every vehicle I see around here billows WHITE smoke when its cold. Both my vehicles have done it and do it currently (I sold my '93) Neither of them had HG issues. My '88 isn't losing any coolant. My '93 did, but it was from one of the rad hoses I think.
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Old 02-05-2009, 01:39 PM   #18
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its not the headgasket if your not loosing coolant and its running fine then nothing is on its way out your truck is fine white smoke in the mornings is normal or when it sits in the cold for long enough
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Old 02-05-2009, 02:00 PM   #19
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Yeah, I'm not loosing coolant and it runs good and gets good mpg and starts up every time with 1st key turn. And it really only shoots white smoke out of the tail pipe after a cold night and it goes away in about 30 sec. to 1 min.

Also, my HG was replaced in 2004 on warranty.
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Old 02-05-2009, 02:03 PM   #20
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then your good
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